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Four hives, two 10-frame & two 8-frame boxes. Two screened bottoms, two solid - all doing well!
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What do you prefer? 8-frame or 10 frame boxes?

I've heard two lines of thought.
1. Some say 10 frame boxes are standard for a reason, and just hold more bees and reserves, and don't need to be stacked as high.
2. Others say that 8 frame is more natural, since bees tend to build up, not out. That's why they tend to "chimney" in 10-frame boxes. Also, bees may not reach food on the outer frames of 10 frame boxes in a cold winter.

Opinions?

Today, my beekeeping mentor mentioned that years ago he decided to simplify and go with 10-frame medium boxes for everything. He uses 2 mediums for brood boxes, and then stacks more as needed. His reasoning is that he can flip, swap or interchange anything at any time. He never told me this before, but it makes sense.

I have a very random mix of equipment, and it seems that anytime I need an 8 frame, I only have a 10, and when I need a deep, I only have a shallow. I like the idea of just using one type of box moving forward for this reason. I just need to decide between 8 and 10 frame width

Opinions?

Thanks.
 

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The choice is yours. You've got some experience, and the opinion of your mentor. I myself have used all of the above and 15 years ago went with all 8 frame deeps. Now I've gone to all 8 frame mediums for the past 4 or 5 years. 2 boxes are equal to a 10 frame deep so that's what I use for broodnest. I over winter in three boxes with notched inner cover and telescoping outer cover, and have good survival over winter.
 

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Four hives, two 10-frame & two 8-frame boxes. Two screened bottoms, two solid - all doing well!
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the quick reply!
I just did a search, and found a TON of posts debating the issue. Some things to think about.

When I do my inspection this week, I'm going to compare how my hives are doing. I only have 4 hives, two are 8's and two are 10's, so it won't be too hard to figure out.
 

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All beekeeping is local. I would heed your mentor's advise. Having said that, I use all medium 10-frame boxes for everything. So many benefits for the same size operation like your mentor told you.
 

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I use all 8 frame hives now. Two 8 frame deeps for hive bodies (plenty of winter stores), medium supers, and 5 frame Nucs. I'm done with the weight. I'm in north Texas so winters are not brutal.
 

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I am trending toward all 10 frame mediums and using my 10 frame deeps for swarm boxes. Although heavy I can still lift but may eventually cut in half and make mediums out of the deeps.
 

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I am also all med 10 frame but still use some old shallow supers.Deeps can be carefully cut down on a table saw with an old blade once nails have been removed along the cut line.

Keep it simple!!
That is sacrilegious to cut up deep boxes! 😱
Shallow boxes waste so much space, they have almost the same amount of wood in them for frames as a deep but only half the foundation area.
Another thing is you would not do well to reduce a medium to a single box colony, for that reason I start with a deep. 10 less frames to do the same job.
2 mediums instead of a deep is 4 more places for heat to leak out.
If the bees get cold they may get blocked by the extra lumber.
 

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I converted to 8 frame because geezer back. I gave medium only a try, but I didn't like having three, sometimes four brood boxes. I now use 8 frame deeps for brood. A brood box is lighter than a super anyways. I've still got some ten frame gear, I haven't noticed that 8 frame hives are in any way hobbled, nor have I noticed that they are better either. They seem to be equal for the bees. But they are 20 lbs lighter for me, enough to make a difference. The bees aren't going to wait while a tweaked back heals.
 

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I have used 8 frame mediums since I started beekeeping, however, last year I worked a friends 10 frame double deeps to help her out and found inspections to be easier and less time consuming. I am considering trying one or two 8 frame deep configurations this year.
 

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10 frame deeps for everything here. Single brood box all year. I want to see how long I can keep lifting the full deep honey boxes off the hives by myself. Once I can't do it anymore, I may rethink my further strategy and options... Other than weight I do not see any downsides to all 10 framers.
 

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What do you prefer? 8-frame or 10 frame boxes?

I've heard two lines of thought.
1. Some say 10 frame boxes are standard for a reason, and just hold more bees and reserves, and don't need to be stacked as high.
2. Others say that 8 frame is more natural, since bees tend to build up, not out. That's why they tend to "chimney" in 10-frame boxes. Also, bees may not reach food on the outer frames of 10 frame boxes in a cold winter.

Opinions?

Today, my beekeeping mentor mentioned that years ago he decided to simplify and go with 10-frame medium boxes for everything. He uses 2 mediums for brood boxes, and then stacks more as needed. His reasoning is that he can flip, swap or interchange anything at any time. He never told me this before, but it makes sense.

I have a very random mix of equipment, and it seems that anytime I need an 8 frame, I only have a 10, and when I need a deep, I only have a shallow. I like the idea of just using one type of box moving forward for this reason. I just need to decide between 8 and 10 frame width

Opinions?

Thanks.
I use two deep 8 frames for brood with medium supers. Usually only one unless we have a bumper flow. I am experimenting with 7 frame deep Apimaye also, but they don't save much weight over regular 8 frame.
 

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Four hives, two 10-frame & two 8-frame boxes. Two screened bottoms, two solid - all doing well!
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
This is an interesting discussion. I have both, and really don't notice much difference, but I HAVE noticed that on the 10's I have to rotate the outer two frames to get them drawn out. I plan to do some deep inspections Wednesday, as I think the swarm I caught was from one of mine. I'll be looking to see if there is any difference between the 8 frame and the 10 frame hives.

That being said, I DO think I'm going to go to all medium boxes. I'm not going to stop using anything for the time being, but only medium boxes and frames going forward. I might stick with the 8 frames for any new hives, IF I think those hives are doing better.
 

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10 frame deeps for everything here. Single brood box all year. I want to see how long I can keep lifting the full deep honey boxes off the hives by myself. Once I can't do it anymore, I may rethink my further strategy and options... Other than weight I do not see any downsides to all 10 framers.
In my territory a person would often be dicey to get a deep of honey. Certainly not two. I commonly put on 3 mediums then start amalgamating frames as they get capped. I would even like to have some shallows but certainly not going to that trouble to make.

I gave myself a hernia about three years ago doing a clean and jerk with a twist to set a deep off onto the stack. I have handled a lot more weight in the past but your glue starts to get more brittle when you get north of 70. Chickens get old and tough but it is not working for me!:giggle:
 

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5 ,8 ,10 frame, and long Lang
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each "size" has a feature set.
for a more robust over all feature set I am in the All of the above camp.
I use:
5F Med
5F deep
8F Med
8F deep
10Fmed
10F deep
10F shallow
32F double deep long Hive

considering some "exotic" hives at the moment, hope to have bees in the wall hives by fall.
did use the buckeye hive this pact winter.
for example,
I use the 5F for mating and splits
I use the 32F for source of splits and early spring build up

I would rather the ability to shift to a "needed" size , rather make every peg fit a round hole.

IF you have tried 6-10 flavors and have a favorite then go for it.
If you only have read about and have selected the 1 for everything, you have barred off some experiences and closed some trails..
Hard to say what that means for each person, as everyone has different choices and trails they are on.
No matter your choice, if singular, you have "deselected" several.
I prefer the options, and will likely keep them all for a while yet.

GG
 

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I'm just starting out, I'll run 8 frame namely because I want to think how easy would this be for someone else to lift,

Of course I also have to be the person wondering if making a super deep frame would work for brooding and be of benefit. [Replies welcome]
 
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